tv American Morning CNN December 27, 2010 6:00am-9:00am EST
down the entire eastern sea board -- >> we're calling it snowmageddon. >> we have about six people here in the building. and we're going to try our best to bring you the news because someone's got to. >> somebody's got to do it and we're all here. let's get started. and it is a monster storm this morning. >> it really is. 30 inches of snow, they say, already on the ground in some areas. it's brought travel to a stand still. thousands of holiday travelers stuck. airlines canceling flights throughout the northeast, all the way to chicago. they are going to be reopening, but not for several hours. and we'll have more on that in a moment. and many people are camping out at the airport this morning. you may be listening to us saying yeah, that's me right now. and there are no guarantees you'll be taking off today or tomorrow. so what can you do if your travel plans fall victim to the storm? and what are you entitled to? tips to save you money and get
you home coming up. and despite a lot of snow and frigid weather, it was a huge holiday shopping season. the first estimates are out and looks like americans are ready to spend their money again. but what did everyone buy? and does this mean the economy may be turning a corner? but first up, some breaking news out of europe this morning. italian authorities are on alert after suspicious packages were found at various embassies in rome. >> authorities say that a suspicious package was discovered at the greek embassy. that has since been defused. they say there were three other packages found at embassies. those threats have now been declared false alarms. but you may remember last week bombs exploded at the chilean and swiss embassies in rome. one bomb defused this morning, we'll keep you posted on this
story this morning. our other big story, it is an absolute holiday travel distress. thousands of travelers are stranded as a monster blizzard continues to pounds the northeast. >> snow emergencies declared in at least four states and several major cities including philadelphia and boston. some places expecting almost 2 1/2 feet of snow by the time it's all over. rob marciano live for us in stanford, connecticut, waking up to almost 2 feet of snow on the ground. and as we can see, it's still blowing out there this morning. hey, rob. >> wow. >> reporter: good morning, guys. when we first woke up, there was a brief break in the actual snow, but now it's coming down again. and the bigger issue is the amount of snow blowing around. the snowplows have been at work all night long. and as a matter of fact, we've been fairly impressed with how the roads are. there's still completely snow-covered. considering how much snow they've gotten and how fierce this wind has been. they're keeping up on it as best as they can. we are standing outside of city
hall. and i'm in the midst of easily over a foot of snow. the drifting of the snow certainly is the larger issue. we've got winds that are blowing well over 40 miles an hour. that has caused power outages across connecticut. at last check, about 14,000 or so from connecticut light and power. our friends just up the road in massachusetts having an even greater issue. some of the winds gusting there on the cape. over 79 miles an hour. and at last check from the emergency managers up there in massachusetts, over 30,000 people are without power. and they have some coastal flood issues because of those strong winds that are blowing off of the harbor there. and quincy, a town that's being partially evacuated. so this storm is far from over for sure. and this snow is going to continue to pile up. as far as what your travel is concerned, i'm told logan and windsor locks are still open. but the rail service from boston
to new york, the civil service has been shut down. trying to get that going later on today. and metro north, which certainly feeds this community here in stanford to new york city, this is probably the largest city outside of new york as far as what would be considered a bedroom or suburb of new york city. but one of the many along the line here on i-95 somewhat paralyzed but the snowstorm. one of the larger ones they've seen in quite some time. last year, a lot of the focus, the bull's eye seemed to be across baltimore and d.c. and new york and this area didn't seem to get a whole lot of snow. but you know, they're pretty storm ready out here. even dunkin donuts has opened up just down the street. one thing about new england, guys, no matter how bad the snowstorm is, it's going to be open. i can't say that for all of the other offices and businesses that are buried in snow right now. back to you guys. >> you're right, in fact our
local starbucks down the street was not as jim found out the hard way. >> boy, that was not a welcome sign this morning. but rob, you're looking good out there, man. hang in there. appreciate it. >> reporter: all right, guys. >> thousands of fliers are stranded this morning as a blizzard continues to pound the northeast. and right now, things are at a stand still at all of new york city's major airports. newark, laguardia, and jfk are all closed this morning. >> and we just got updated opening times from the faa. and here they are. newark is going to be opening at 12:00 p.m. eastern time today, laguardia at 2:00 p.m., and jfk not opening up until 4:00 p.m. >> 4:00. >> this afternoon. and that's opening up. and obviously there'll be so many people trying to get on flights after theirs were canceled. and i'm sure we're looking at a lot of backups. allan chernoff is at laguardia joining us by phone. what are the chances you're going to take off today if your flight was canceled? >> reporter: not very good for many of the people who had to
sleep here overnight. the fact is that laguardia airport has turned into a dormitory. i counted 85 people who have slept overnight, 65 of them o on cots. they were lined up on an overpass between the main terminal and the garage. it really is quite a sight. and some very, very sad stories among some of these folks. i spoke to sarah, she's trying to get home to shanghai, she has to fly through chicago. she was supposed to fly out at 6:00 p.m. yesterday. the flight was canceled, the american airlines flight was canceled. she came to the airport anyway hoping to be able to buy another ticket. now she's heading out, supposedly, tomorrow at 7:00 a.m. to chicago. that means she's going to have to stay here another night. she told me i'm so tired i have no place to go. and keep in mind, once she gets to chicago, she's got a 14-hour flight to get back home. as you said, the airport is
supposed to reopen at 2:00 this afternoon eastern time. there's one plane on the ground right now that i've counted. the plows are busy. they're still trying to clear the runways. but it clearly -- even when the airport does in theory open at 2:00, it's going to be quite some time before we get back to a regular schedule. and even then, it's going to take much longer to get everybody, all the passengers who are supposed to fly out yesterday and today, for all of them to finally get where they want to go. guys? >> and allan, the conditions on the ground or the air that caused the airports to shut down? it was curious to see, the three new york airports not having any incoming or outgoing traffic. yet, there were some in connecticut that were open, some of the regional airports. >> reporter: right. well, the it's not purely a function of all of that either. it's a combination of those two factors, but it's also the fact that the -- that the airlines actually want to keep their planes away.
by late yesterday, there were absolutely no planes on the ground here. i spoke to some of the guys who were out there for 14 hours yesterday de-icing the planes for american airlines. they -- these guys usually handle cargo. and they'd told me they'd gotten all the planes out. exactly what american wanted. they want the planes away from the storm. once the storm is over, that's when they'll bring them back in, reposition, and get their schedule back up and running. so it's going to take quite some time. so keep in mind this is also a function of the stranl that the airlines have to try to get back up and going as soon as they can. >> all right. >> allan chernoff. and he was talking about, you know, some of the conditions at the local airports. we were getting information from noaa overnight that there were wind gusts in the 60s, wind gusts in the 40s at jfk and laguardia. >> and also up in cape cod, 80 miles per hour wind gusts.
obviously they don't want to take a chance. the only thing worse than being stuck on the tarmac or the terminal, what about the runway? earlier this morning, our sister network got in touch with the passenger on a flight from jfk trying to head back to tel aviv. they sat on the runway for almost eight hours. >> it must be miserable onboard. what are you people doing? >> people right now are actually sleeping. but for the first few hours, people were going in and out of sort of -- you know, they're on their laptops, they were reading, listening to music, and then people got up and started talking, you know, conversations. i got to tell you, the crew has been fantastic. the captain has kept us appraised about updates. there hasn't been one in the last few hours because of the conditions. but they served us dinner and people have been in good spirits. >> and ironically he said that the flight was just seconds from taking off when the airport closed. they remained on the runway.
and guys in the control room. was it 4:00 a.m. when they got the all clear and brought back to the terminal? >> something like that, yeah. yeah, because basically it was too dangerous to bring them back to the terminal that, you know, the only -- the only recourse they had to leave them stranded out there. but according to that passenger, the crew was doing a great job. >> i thought you were going to say to the bill of rights, they were supposed to be back there in the couple of hours -- >> i think it goes out the window during something like this. but we'll see. heavy winds are making this whole situation tough to deal with. reynolds wolf is in the extreme weather center. and reynolds, these are some -- you're just looking at the data from this storm. it's just unbelievable. staggering information to look at. >> absolutely. the thing is, there have been stronger storms. in fact, last year in february, we had two of them that struck the northeast corridor, hit washington, d.c., hit new york, philadelphia, and boston, up and
down the eastern sea board. two times in an 11-day span. we've had stronger issues. the problem with this one is it's a potent storm, but also the timing. the sheer timing when you have people trying to get to the airport and trying to get home. let's get right to the computer and take a look at it. the bird's eye view, a few spits and drizzles out to the west. as you zoom in, you can see the snow showers coming in along the jersey shore. a lot of it coming in from the coast now. everything drifting from the top to the bottom near the screen indicating the cold air convection coming in from north to south. white plains living up to its billing this morning. even up towards boston, out towards cape cod, you've got the rainfall where you have temperatures on the other side of the freezing point. but when you get back into boston common itself and take the turn bipike back into the berkshires. blizzard effect through about noon today.
and that's a combination of not just snow, but also those strong wind gusts topping 50 miles per hour at times. it's going to be a real hassle for a lot of people. of course on the roadways, definitely, of course, on the airports. some of the rainfall totals, rather snow totals over the past 24 hours. cape may with 18 inches of snow, more of that, no question about it. delays in new york. we've all talked about the issues at jfk, laguardia, newark, you've got problems too. airport closed in atlantic city, over in bedford and new haven, no business for you today. coming up, i know you're going to -- trying to give you a better idea of what to expect with the storm and when it's going to be moving deeper into the atlantic and out of harm's way. guys? >> it's going to be a long day for a lot of people. >> yeah, i'm looking at the cars to the side of the road in new york. if if you didn't get out yesterday once the plows come through, i don't think you're
getting out -- maybe st. patrick's day. >> and you and i saw that firsthand. >> we lived it. >> we lived through it. and we made it. at least we made it to work. it was even a rare white christmas in the south before the nor'easter turned up the coast and gave places like atlanta and nashville more than a dusting. it was the first time -- get this, atlanta got snow on christmas day in 129 years. i'm sure they enjoyed it. >> yeah, white christmas for hotlanta. the ravens thought they were on fire yesterday after clinching the playoffs. and one of of them was on fire. he sat a little too close to the heater on the sideline. there you can see sort of react when it begins to ignite. but he was not hurt. he didn't, by the way have two interceptions, including the game-winner. walk it off, walk it off. >> use a couple of those warmers in here. >> does it make it worse? i feel when you're sitting there warming up the sidelines and you've got to rip off the jacket
and go out there again. that's got to be tough. >> i can only judge from my days playing high school football, which a lot of it is on the bench, the it's pretty darn cold down there. any warmers would do a lot of good. so hats off to them. the blizzard forced the nfl to shift the eagles/vikings game. forget the frozen tundra, philadelphia couldn't make it happen last night. the move means the vikings will be stuck in philadelphia for a couple of extra days. they were forced to play a home game in detroit after 17 inches of snow collapsed the metro dome's roof. the vikings hosted the bears outdoors at the university of minnesota's new stadium. we all remember that. wherever the vikings go, there are weather troubles. >> their home stadium is covered. >> yeah. >> it was covered. until -- until it got 17 inches of snow and collapsed. well, thousands of airplane and plane passengers stranded this morning. as we talked about.
allan chernoff said laguardia and many other places are stuck. what can passengers do? what are some of the tips? and how should airlines handle the situation? more about that coming up. join the jaguar platinum celebration ! come celebrate exciting cars that are stunning to look at, exhilarating to drive and worry free to own. celebrate this holiday season with the gift of platinum. jaguar platinum coverage: five years or 50,000 miles of complimentary scheduled maintenance, and no cost replacement of wear and tear items. visit your jaguar dealer during the platinum celebration for a $599 lease offer on the 2011 xf.
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picture this morning of philadelphia. very snowy philadelphia. it's 25 degrees right now, but with the snow and wind, the feels like temperature in the single digits for much of the east coast this morning. a little bit later, more snow, showers, wind, 27 degrees for a high, but again with the windchill out there if you're out there shoveling, throw on a few more layers because it is going to be nippy out today. air travel, by the way, at a virtual stand still this morning. holiday travelers are stuck. thousands of flights grounded as this monster blizzard barrels up the east coast. about 2,000 flights in all canceled. in new york alone, jfk, laguardia, and newark airports have suspended all air traffic. almost every hotel room in new york is booked. and we know that firsthand because we tried to get some of these rooms for our people trying to come in from the burbs affecting a lot of people far
away from the northeast, as well. and joining us is the senior editor at travelocity. thanks for joining us. we did get news about the new york area airports. i think they're opening newark at noon, jfk at 4:00 p.m., and laguardia at 2:00? >> exactly. >> what's going on right now? what's your best bet if you're stuck at an airport trying to get a flight out? >> if you're already at the airport, i can't lie to you, it's going to be a difficult situation. make yourself as comfortable as possible. see if you can talk to someone live at the airport. if there aren't that many employees around to talk to, you want to make sure you get on the phone, call your carrier, call the 1-800 number. see what they can do for you about getting you rescheduled on the quickest flight home. >> right. do you have priority? meaning that if you are already stuck at an airport -- let's say you missed your connection or whatever. you have no place to go. do they try to place you first as opposed to the people at home or no? they don't do that? >> they won't place you ahead of people who are ticketed to fly
out today or tomorrow. those people will go out as usual on their flights if their flights do, in fact, leave. the people who are stranded will be put on any available seats over the next few days. but as you said, 2,000 flights canceled yesterday. that translates into tens of thousands of people now competing for very few available seats. this is the time to be as flexible as possible. if you're supposed to go to new york but you find a seat open on a flight to philadelphia, start making your way home. it's better to move in the right direction than to be stuck in one place. >> in some cases, the tough part is that you'd think, okay, i'll grab the amtrak at that point or take a local bus, but they're not running either. >> they're not rung either. b but they will be. you'll get home eventually. be as patient as you can and move in the right direction whenever you can. >> the other question, it happened at the absolute worst time, the day after christmas,
and a lot of people are traveli traveling at that time, obviously. what are the airlines' game plan when this happens? you know, it seems -- obviously there's nothing you can do. you can't compete against the weather. you don't want to be unsafe. but are there things that they do right that maybe is a lesson for the future? >> yeah, some airports will distribute things like food vouchers and cots and blankets and pillows to make people as comfortable as they possibly can be when they wait. but for people who have not gotten to the airport, who have not left for the airport yet, i would strongly recommend that you do not go to the airport. there's very little you can accomplish at the airport right now that you can't accomplish from the comfort of your home or your hotel room over the phone. it's in your best interest to stay home. >> what about the refunds? >> you can get a refund. so all the airlines have instituted flexible travel policies and waived all change fees. for people who want to get a
full refund, if your flight was canceled, you are eligible for a refund, as well. >> i know it's not easy especially if you're already stuck at the airport or if you had big plans and find yourself stuck. but you have to try to be flexible as everybody works pretty quickly to try to get this taken care of. >> right. >> can't fight mother nature, though. thanks so much for joining us this morning. >> thanks. >> and a little travel update. apparently amtrak has restarted service. >> on the northeast corridor. >> that is good news. >> i can relate to the story you're talking about. i was trying like mad to get here yesterday and on the phones and at the stratrain stations w not easy. hugh heffner is taking the marriage plunge once again and his bride-to-be a 24-year-old play mate. >> there's 60 year's difference. >> i cannot believe that. >> the happy couple up next in our morning talkers.
>> so cute. >> i know. >> the happy couple. >> it is. the world's number one playboy. he's a romantic about this sort of thing. he's tieing the knot again. hugh hefner says he proposed on christmas eve. the bride-to-be just 24 years old. crystal harris, as you may know, she's ms. december 2009. >> she's basically 34 years older than his daughter -- >> is that right? >> i wasn't thinking about that math. i was thinking about the age difference between the hef and the bride to be. he's 84 now. >> that's right. 60 years apart. >> 60 years apart. that's incredible. >> well, congrats to them. the funny thing on top of that, he tweeted the news. so he's hip and with it. >> he can hang. >> age is only a number. >> that's right. what do you do after surviving 69 days trapped in a mine? well, you go to disney world. the 33 miners will head down to orlando at the end of january. disney's going to be hosting them and their families for a
six-night stay. the group will also serve as the honorary grand marshals of the parade taking place at the resort. >> don't get stuck in space mountain, guys. those little fockers are back on top again. raked in about $34 million at the box office. the slapstick comedy stars ben stiller and robert de niro. "true grit" landed in the number two spot. >> a lot of people said it's great. >> i love jeff bridges. >> they didn't do "the hangover," did they? >> "the big labowsky," though, a classic. bristol palin is moving to phoenix. sarah palin's daughter bought a house for $172,000. it's not clear why bristol bought the house. tmz reporting, though, she may attend arizona state university next year. >> so bristol palin's arizona is
coming to tlc, perhaps, somewhere down the line. we can look forward to that. has president obama finally kicked the smoking habit for good? robert gibbs weighs in. that's coming up next. also, 2,000 flights canceled at the nation's busiest airports. still states of emergencies declared in several states. the latest live developments as the blizzard blasts the northeast next.
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caught up on the top stories this morning. >> it's a mess out there. >> it's the brricane. >> 2,000 flights canceled. all shut down. we did just get word, though, the amtrak's northeast corridor service between new york and boston is going to be resuming. this will be on a limited schedule, though. they suspended service last evening. many holiday travelers spent the night at the airport with nowhere else to go and no other way out by car or by train. it's pretty amazing that you made it up here. because you took the -- you took the regular train? >> i took the acella and the train was sold out. and i went to the train station anyway and was literally swiping my credit card over and over again in the kiosk until i got a ticket. >> how did that -- >> essentially, they were releasing tickets minutes before the train arrived. and i happened to get a ticket at the last second. i was able to hop on the train and beat the storm. but i was basically biting my
nails about whether or not i was going to get here. and obviously i'm here. other developing news this morning in europe. we want to report to you that italian bomb experts have defused an explosive package found at the greek embassy in rome. suspicious packages at other embassies have been proven to be false alarms. and last week we were reporting bombs exploded at the chilean embassies and swiss embassies in rome. >> so this could have been another potentially serious situation. they were able to defuse it on time, though. >> absolutely. well, an arizona state lawmaker is able to recover this morning after police say he was beaten and left unconscious in his own pool store. it happened on christmas day. representative frank pratt, 68-year-old republican, found by his wife more than four hours after the attack. a sheriff's spokesman said the attacker took off in his suv. now listed in stable condition at a phoenix-area hospital. and he may have really
kicked the habit this time. white house press secretary robert gibbs says president obama quit smoking months ago. he didn't even light up on election night. and it may really stick this time. >> i can report that it's been probably about nine months since he last smoked a cigarette. he has done enormously well in quitting. it was a commitment that i think he made to himself at the end of health care. and with his two daughters in mind. >> gibbs said this is the longest period in almost eight years that he's known the president that he's gone without a cigarette. so -- >> good for him. >> no longer the first smoker. we want to get the latest on a blizzard that's buried the northeast. when all is said and done, could get up to 2 feet of of snow. >> unbelievable. it is blinding, crippling, air travel is a mess. 2,000 flights grounded across the country. and rob marciano is live for us this morning in stanford, connecticut. and rob, we've been calling it a
brricane this morning. and we can see in your picture the wind is howling where you are in stanford. >> reporter: yeah, the blizzard warning is still up. but i can tell you this, the buses here in stanford are up and running. and we've got a little bit of foot traffic here and there. one of the busier spots downtown. but i might have to give this bus a push here. he's stuck in this snow bank. this is one of the bus stops we're at right outside of city hall. and we've got some issues. anyway, they're trying to clear these roads, and, you know, when you've got snowfall rates of 1 to 2 inches an hour, what are my odds? what are my odds of helping this thing? maybe a volkswagen beetle. >> could you give the bus a push? can you get a couple of guys? >> i tried.
i've been -- well, there it goes. i think i helped it quite a bit there. >> you could have done that with one finger, got the bus right on its way. >> wow, well, i guess this is breaking news. >> as we're talking here, rob. >> no, but jim was saying. >> no, anyway, connecticut transit, come on, guys, give it a shove. there's all of three people on the bus, so it's not that weighted down. >> but it's murphy's law of live shots. >> i think he's going to make some progress. >> yeah, rob, i was just saying -- >> come on, rock this baby back and forth. bon jovi here on the cover of the bus and they're not going to help much. here we go. >> he's out. >> there we go. >> these guys are experienced. here comes another one. i've seen nothing but plows and buses on this corner. >> see you later, rob. >> reporter: i'm not doing well. >> that was rob marciano live in
stanford for us this morning. the murphy's law of live shots. any time you're trying to do a live shot, a bus or fire truck goes by. >> i've never seen a bus block the shot and end up behind you. >> that takes the cake. but that is a perfect picture of what it's like out there. some places where i live, i live in the burbs too, not all the way up in stanford, but somewhere between the two. and our side streets were not plowed any way, shape, or form. my driver this morning got stuck and we're both under there with the shovel. >> you were out there shoveling? >> 3:00 a.m., yeah, i had to get bottled water for us because we were sweating. >> and you were concerned about your driver doing the shoveling. so you got out of the car. >> i wasn't in the car. i had to go back to the garage, get the shovel out. all that snow in, it wouldn't close. but it's good to get your cardio out of the way early.
i've got the whole day now to sit on the couch. >> and it's perfect, right after christmas, burning off that fruitcake and everything else. so there you go. and speaking of the holidays, retailers getting what they wished for on this christmas season. looks like shoppers are splurging again. what did everyone buy? we'll find out in a few minutes. it's 36 minutes after the hour. ♪ i hate suburbia and the bourgeoi-sie ♪ ♪ but i really love my bank
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♪ a lot of barbies under the christmas tree this year. some holiday cheer in store for the economy. and the reason is you, the american consumer, is spending once again. on christmas eve, the national retail federation predicted holiday spending would climb 3.3% from last year. the final numbers won't be in until later this week. but what does that mean for the recovery? and what exactly did we spend all that money on? marshall cohen is the chief industry analyst for the npd group and live via skype this morning because quite frankly it was too dangerous to get him to a live camera to join us this morning. thanks, marshall, for joining
us, we appreciate it. this was quite a surprise. i mean, to see holiday spending up this much. apparently americans spent almost as much as the record in 2007. what do you make of these numbers? and what does it mean for our economy? >> well, the real key here is recognizing that the consumer came out to spend this year. and they came out not only to spend on gifts, but they also had pent up demand. what i call frugal fatigue and bought for themselves, as well. and that's really the big news that you have to kind of hang your hat on and recognize that the consumer coming out and spending on themselves means that's going to carry momentum into 2011. that's what's going to drive our economy into a much healthier state. >> and marshall, you spent time going to the malls, department stores, observing shoppers, what did you pick up on? >> well, what we really saw were consumers who were seeking bargains, and that was what the lure to get them in.
they were able to take advantage of the doorbuster deals and classifications that were put on sale. items like small accessories. you know, last year it was all about the big handbags. this year it was about designer brands in smaller price points and smaller bags. the sweater business did exceptionally well this year. because we went back to traditional gifts. keep in mind, a lot of new and exciting merchandise wasn't really all that available because the economy caused grand and designers to be more conservative. so we found a lot of repeat items this holiday season. that meant consumers went back to traditional things. and even businesses like footwear did exceptionally well this holiday. not only were they given as gifts, but they were also bought as self-purchases. a couple other key items were things like the digital readers, e-readers. the consumer -- one of the few items out there, even though it was a repeat from last year, a
lot of people said, all right, i'll break down and buy one. and that had too with the fact that price points came down. the toy business did very well this year, as well. >> and marshall, since we're talking about the weather so much this morning, i'm curious. it's a good thing this major weather event did not happen before christmas. but do some of these numbers get affected in terms of the post-christmas shopping? because that's also a big factor on holiday spending. and that will be impacted, i suppose, somewhat by this storm. >> yeah, that's really the million dollar question for the week. and the answer is, yes. it is very impactful on retail. keep in mind the day after christmas is traditionally one of the top six busiest days for retailers. and across almost 30% of the country, those retailers lost that day. now, will they be able to get it back? the answer is yes, but it's going to take two to three weeks for them to get it back. also, recognize next week, you
know, you would think it would just roll over to the next weekend. well, it's new year's weekend. so that changes the shopping dynamic. so retailers are going to take a little bit of time in recouping that loss business that they get post-holiday. the consumer still has all of those gifts they want to return. so they're going to go out to stores. it just may take them a little longer to do it over the course of the calendar year. >> all right. well, shopping industry analyst marshal cohen, we appreciate your time this morning and hope you stay safe, sir. thanks so much for your time. >> pleasure to be here. we're following the latest with the storm updates for you on the airports. they are reopening today in many parts of the northeast. >> we hope. >> but, yeah, if your flight's canceled and you're there, it's still going to be quite a tough one for you today as you try to get on another flight. reynolds wolf is coming up. let us know when this thing will finally blow offshore. and look at what the snow totals may be coming up. join the jaguar platinum celebration !
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♪ that is -- that's the sight. that's columbus circle this morning. one guy walking, and not a single car. usually we're seeing cars, taxis. there's one guy walking on the right-hand side of the screen. that was jim three hours ago, right? >> it was. >> we -- we were along 58th street here in new york between 8th and 9th. we couldn't get on to 58th street because the parallel, the perpendicular roads were not passable this morning. we had to go up to 72nd and come back down. right now 23 degrees is the temperature, but feels way colder than that when it's blowing on you. and blizzard-like conditions even throughout the day. >> absolutely. the city that never sleeps is sleeping. but unfortunately for some of us, we had to get to work this morning. it was a fun walk to work for me. i had to make it just up the street from 7th avenue.
>> from an undisclosed hotel. >> exactly. it wasn't that far. you had to come in from the suburbs. >> yeah, from about 20 miles, 23 miles northeast. but let's see yours first? you tell us which one was worse. >> i'm walking up broadway right now. and the great white way, it's all white. i'm almost to the building. so this is good news. but the sidewalks are not cleared, the streets are barely plowed, this is new york like you rarely ever see it. >> and anchors as you rarely see them. without make-up and lots of snow gear. >> glad you wore a hat. i always laugh when people are out in blizzards without a hat on. >> and how dumb do i look shooting that with my blackberry? >> you didn't look dumb. you looked great. it took two hours, usually takes 25 minutes. here's a look at us trying to
get on to interstate 95 this morning. >> we're waiting for this -- snowplow to plow the onramp to 95. so that we can actually get on the highway. >> not exactly using your anchor voice there. >> i was trying to talk softly because i didn't want to scare my poor driver who already literally was driving down the road like this. but yeah, we couldn't even -- he was literally like this with the car. >> wow. >> i -- i can't even explain -- i don't know how he did it, god bless you, victor. but when we finally got here, he was like, well, we made it, by a miracle. but we had to wait for the plow. we couldn't see the onramp, with circled back a few times. once you miss a certain road and you don't get on it, you need that inertia in this weather. all's well that end well. >> exactly. we made it.
whether you're stuck in the snow or out enjoying it, we want to hear from you. upload your pictures and videos and feel free to be as casual and kiran and i were earlier this morning. >> the crew's laughing at me. that's me pre-red bull. >> that's your golf voice. >> he made the putt, oh, missed it. >> stay safe out there. let's get to reynolds wolf this morning. and reynolds, we want to -- we wanted to check in with you and see how things are looking an your end. >> reporte >> things are looking pretty good all things considered. you know, next time, maybe when you have those kind of conditions, maybe it's better to just get away from the car and take the dog sled and the full team of dogs in. i'm telling you, mush, mush, mush would have been a much more efficient way to go. heavy in parts there of new york. very difficult for a lot of
people to get around as you guys have shown us. some places around a foot of snowfall in new york. philadelphia actually lucked out. under 5 inches of snowfall. everything else, much heavier along the coast. but as you can see, still snowfall around atlantic city. as we make our way up the coast. heavier snowfall, long island, white plains, certainly some snow there. if you look out towards the west, a few more bands coming through. so additional snowfall is on the way. what's interesting is in parts of the area, you could have snow forming along 495 up in massachusetts. but out towards cape cod, it switches over to rain very quickly because the temperatures on the cape well above the freezing point. everything farther west, you've got temperatures right into the 30s at this time. let's show you what else we've got for you. at this point, again, blizzard warnings that will be in effect. these will all expire by noon. but even after today, the warnings expire, still the breezy conditions which might cause some backups. plenty of backups, obviously, because the closures at the
airport. and again, here's the reason why. the heavy snow at newark, over 23 inches in some spots. in brooklyn, 17.5. south boston, 12, and the snow still coming in philadelphia. the closures, read them and weep. at jfk, laguardia, newark, atlantic city, all closed this hour. bedford and new haven, things are closed. improvements expected later on today. slow going, but as jim mentioned earlier, once these things open up, you have to deal with that backlog of passengers. folks, a very difficult day for a lot of folks. if you still don't have to get out, don't. many roads, many streets will remain impassable. it's going to be a very frustrating day for a lot of folks. just take it easy. things will improve throughout the rest of the week. back to you in the studio. >> yeah. all right. as we know, they are going to open these airports today. but whether or not you can actually get a flight. that remains to be seen. if you don't have to be anywhere, just wait a day. >> dog sled's an option out
there for you. >> those huskies will keep going. >> mush. >> thanks, reynolds. this morning's top stories a couple minutes away. including forget the gift cards, returns, and after christmas sales. a great time to be in the shovel business. we'll take a look at the financial winners and losers of the big northeast blizzard. do tell, what month is it this time? find out in talkers. [ male announcer ] how can rice production in india
request a prospectus or summary prospectus with investment objectives, risks, fees, expenses, and other information to read and consider carefully before investing. all right. so we do have some other news to talk about this morning. there are some new developments overnight in the alaska senate race. remember that one? it may finally be over. joe miller says he'll no longer stand in the way of lisa murkowski being certified as the winner. but he says, he plans to file a federal lawsuit challenging the state's handling of the vote count. murkowski launched a write-in campaign after losing the primary. >> they have not been successful since strom thurman in 1964. the man behind wikileaks says he signed a $1.3 million book deal. he says he didn't want to write
it but needs the money to keep his website afloat to pay legal fees and cover lawsuits and defend himself against sex charges in sweden. bank of america, visa, mastercard, and paypal have cut off payments to wikileaks. and she was known as the ivory queen of soul. teena marie died at 54 years old. she passed away in her sleep yesterday. she was motown's first white act and worked with smokey robinson and rick "funk" james. and christopher tierny, the actor that fell 15 feet is walking again after back surgery. he is still in intensive care. doctors reportedly told the family that he is lucky to be alive. his father says he can't wait to get back to playing the role.
"spider-man," the most expensive broadway production ever and shut down for two shows after the accident. more on the brricane in a few moments. lots of live shots, rob marciano is stuck in stanford, hopefully out from behind that bus. >> yeah, allan chernoff at laguardia and all the updates on the airports. they're opening today, we hope. >> right after the break. the wheel of a cadillac cts during our season's best sales event. with a direct-injection v-6 and cadillac premium care maintenance for four years or 50,000 miles, it's one gift you'll never want to return. see your cadillac dealer for this attractive offer on an exhilarating cadillac cts. but hurry -- the season's best sales event from cadillac ends soon. ♪
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targeted no-mess relief. icy to dull pain. hot to relax it away. pain's no match for the icy hot patch. all right. good morning. it's monday, december 27th. the most snow in the morning here on cnn. i'm jim acosta. >> i'm kiran chetry. we want to get you caught up on what's going on and then we'll tell you about our skeleton crew here. the few and weary who made it in. we're firing on all cylinders this morning. be many snowed in. a monster blizzard wreaking havoc across the northeast this
morning. 30 inches of snow already on the ground in some areas, 30 inches. thousands of holiday travelers are stuck, airlines canceled flights throughout the northeast. all the way to chicago, the carolinas, even the west coast. and more misery unfortunately is on the way. >> yes, we feel your pain. many people are camping out at the airports this morning. and there are no guarantees they'll be taking off today or tomorrow. so what can you do if your travel plans get scrapped? we have more on that coming up. also, if you live in the northeast, you're probably feeling the effects of the blizzard today. it was not all bad news for businesses. some retailers actually hit the jackpot when the monster storm headed up the east coast. we have the stores that saw green when everybody else saw white. and the businesses that will be paying for the blizzard for weeks to come. up first, it is an absolute holiday travel mess, it has nothing to do with whether you were naughty or nice. thousands of fliers are stranded as a blizzard continues to pound the northeast. snow emergencies have been declared in four states and several major cities including philadelphia and boston. some places expecting almost
2 1/2 feet of snow by the time it's all over. >> that's right. right now things at a stand still at all of new york's major airports. newark, laguardia, and jfk all closed right now. we have the updated times for you. newark opening at noon today, laguardia at 2:00 p.m. this afternoon, and jfk opening at 4:00 p.m. this afternoon. >> incredible. >> and atlanta city, they're opening at 8:00 this morning, same with new haven opening up at 7:00. >> we're basically in the bull's eye. >> yeah, we are. yeah, we are. and of course, we know how many travelers go in and out of those three major airports in new york. allan chernoff at laguardia this morning. if you're one of the people stranded there, it's no guarantee you're getting out any time soon. >> reporter: no guarantee this place is opening up at 2:00. i spoke to the general manager here. he's saying it could take until 4:00 this afternoon to get the airport fully operational. he said the runways are doing
okay, the taxi ways not very good. mainly because of the winds, which he said hit as much as 60 miles an hour last night. that's what's happening outside. inside, welcome to the hotel laguardia. he told me that 250 people were stranded here. i did a quick count early this morning about 5:00. i counted just 85 on this side of the terminal, there's another side of the terminal. people are sleeping in cots on these connecter ways between the main terminal and the garage. these hallways lined with cots. we'll get footage to you later on. other people, they were just stuck right here on the main terminal floor. one of them claire ramoni. she did not sleep at all? >> correct. did not. >> reporter: oh, my. you look pretty good. >> well, thanks. i love you too. >> reporter: well, now, claire was trying to get to dale. you had a flight at 4:20 p.m.
yesterday. it had been canceled, had it not? >> yes, it did. >> reporter: okay. but you were hoping to get another flight. where do things stand? when do you think you may get out? >> well, everything's been canceled. we've been up all night checking the monitors and right now doesn't look like we're going to get out until maybe between 2:00, 4:00, 6:00 at night. >> reporter: a lot of folks could be here much, much longer. kiran, jim. >> all right. >> the hotel laguardia, travelers check in, but may not check out. >> they're saying too, but allan's saying the general manager says maybe not until 4:00 p.m. we'll continue to check in with you. so the only thing worse being stuck in a terminal. how about being stranded on the actual runway. >> cnni got in touch with a passenger sitting on the tarmac for almost eight hours. >> so it must be miserable onboard. what are you people doing?
>> people right now are actually sleeping. but for the first few hours, people were going in and out of sort of, you know, they're on their laptops, they were reading, listening to music, and then people got up and started talking, you know, conversations. i've got to tell you, the crew has been absolutely fantastic. the captain has kept us appra e appraised up until now about updates. there hasn't been one in the last few hours because of the conditions. but the crew -- they've served us dinner and people are in good spirits. >> we should point out that the plane is not still out on the tarmac. made its way back to the gate about three hours ago. >> and then they also said they were to report to the gate to reboard now at 7:00. >> i'm sure they were like, yeah right. he also said that the flight was just seconds from taking off when the airport shut down. murphy's law there. they could not have been more unlucky on that one. well, snow emergencies are in place across the northeast this morning.
everyone's being encouraged to stay off the roads by taking mass transit. and that's if you can get mass transit, at least here in new york. a lot of the subway lines are running on limited schedule, holiday schedule with anything. >> and speaking of mass transit, our rob marciano is live for us. and now in stanford, connecticut, where earlier this morning we saw a bus stuck behind rob. that may be the same bus and a bus got stuck in front of his camera. he was completely in front of the picture at some point. oh, no, not again. >> no way, rob. you paid them off that time. >> reporter: we are fine. he's weaving around our satellite truck. that bus that you saw 20 minutes ago that was stuck briefly behind me managed to get out. but another one came whipping around this corner. and this guy is stuck. stuck for real, as a matter of fact. cops come in and the tow truck's going to get in here and try to get him o out.
we got the shovel out of the truck, but this one's buried a good 2 or 3 feet deep. you've got to bring in the heavy equipment for this guy. they had the plows out -- go ahead and move about your way. you going to work? >> go about your business. >> reporter: they're not shutting down your office are they? be safe. you know, people are still trying to get to work guys. not everything is closed down around here, that's for sure. but you say take mass transit, there's no guarantee you're going to get to work either. they have shut down at last check the new haven line of metro north until further north. boston logan airport theoretically is still open, but winds are still gusting well over 40 miles an hour. last night we had wind gusts on the cape of 80 miles an hour. and that has taken down some trees as you can imagine and some power lines. so over 26,000 people without power in massachusetts, here in connecticut, about 15,000 people so far are without power, and the blizzard warnings remain up. streets are still snow-covered,
although they've been trying to get by plowing things around. but with the winds whipping around. even though it's not snowing as hard as it was six hours ago, you've got blowing and drifting snow that covers up the roadways and makes it obviously very slick, even for the vehicles. heavy as buses here. it's been quite a blockbuster storm for the i-95 corridor, especially from new york city up to boston. and it's not over yet. that's for sure. guys? >> and rob, do we need to check the stanford bus schedule and schedule your live shots around that schedule? it might help. >> i can tell you this -- they all seem to be running on time. i think they've got every bus in the city up for this spot. i suppose it's a major hub. we're right by town hall. and right in downtown stanford, which was founded back in the 1600s, a little over 100,000 people that live here. one of the many communities that lie in the i-95 corridor that
feed new york city, feed boston, and feed hartford, new haven. it's up and running this morning as best as they can. but aside from that guy walking to work, we haven't seen too many passers by as the sun begins to shed daylight. and getting to see a good scope of what this scene is like. and it's just like i remember as a kid. knee deep, waist deep in snow. and a little bit nostalgic to have the day off. get out there and build a snowman if you can. >> make some snow angels. >> the second he's not on camera, he's going to plop himself down in the snow and start. >> the camera better be rolling. >> reporter: you do that on cam a ra and that limits your caree. a >> it's all the grown-ups that have to stress. >> some of those kids are thinking, does this have to
happen during winter vacation? heavy winds making the whole thing tougher to deal with. reynolds wolf in the extreme weather center this morning. in some cases, these gusts -- i mean, tropical storm-strength winds. >> yeah, hurricane force when you talk about the 80 miles an hour gusts out at the cape. and of course the power outages. a lot of people looking outside and blown away by the amount of snowfall out there. people trying to get out of town as we've been telling you all morning long, it'll be an exercise in futility. check out the closures. of course, the major airports, jfk, laguardia, newark, all shut down for the time being, they will open up later on today. some thinking, well, i'll try another one, guess what? same result. shut down for the time being mainly because of the winds and the snowfall. speaking of snow, how much will we get? depends on where you are. in newark, 23.0, brooklyn, 17.5,
south boston, even in philadelphia you had about 4.8 inches of snowfall there. a few other places were even more impressive. nearly 30 inches in lyndhurst. cape may, you see the number there too, well over a foot of snow. what we can anticipate is that the snow is going to continue to come down. you see the blizzard warnings on the map. all the areas shaded in red, that's where you have the blizzard warnings. by noontime, they fizzle out. as the storm moves farther into the atlantic, which is good news. but still right behind it. plenty of cool air, the snow showers should last until early afternoon. in wilmington, things are improving. back over to white plains, a break in about two minutes or so before another feeder band comes on through. meaning a band of the snow showers.
woonsocket, you've got the snow action. out at the cape, mainly a rain event. now, we don't want to neglect the rest of the nation. obviously all kinds of things we're dealing with in the northeast. new york the high today will be 27, and you saw, of course, in places like minnesota, mainly mid-20s and weather conditions and airport conditions better than what you'll have in the northeast. but again, guys, remember, when you have those kind of issues in the northeast, you'll have the spillover effects in atlanta, backups probably in places like chicago. it's kind of a trickle down effect. headache for a lot of people coast-to-coast. >> all right, reynolds. trickle down. boy, diggi inging out is going the crazy part. i can't even imagine. i may stay at work a little later today. less stuff to do around the house. >> i remember the snowmaggeddons in the d.c. area. there was one in december, i think. we had two of them. and that was the most snow i'd ever shovelled in my life
collectively. if you take all the snow i shovelled in my life, it did not match those two snows. i don't want to see that again. >> 9/11 the south, it was rare. a white christmas before the nor'easter turned up the coast, it did get places like atlanta and nashville more than a dusting. the first time atlanta got snow on christmas day in 129 years. there's a live picture now. it's shaping up to be a windy day, a high of just 38 degrees. but no more snow. >> yeah. and the blizzard forced the nfl to shift the eagles/vikings game to tomorrow night in philadelphia. the move means the vikings will be stuck in philadelphia for a couple extra days. a couple of the football players had not packed enough clothing for this long of stay. so they've got that to deal with. the vikings were already forced to play a home game in detroit after 17 inches of snow collapsed the metro dome roof. and last monday the vikings hosted the bears outdoors at the university of minnesota's new stadium. wherever the vikings go, trouble seems to follow. >> yeah, i know.
the ravens felt on fire yesterday, they clinched a playoff spot. one of the ravens was on fire for a short time. that's ed reed. >> caught fire along the sideline. >> he sat a little too close to the heater on the sideline. you can see him react when he gets to smoke a little bit there. he was not hurt and did have two interceptions yesterday. so he was on fire on and off the field. the game-winner. the interception. >> literally enfuego. the national weather service has issued four bulletins. a blizzard warning, a special weather statement on the intensity and duration of the storm and hazardous weather outlook. all you weather geeks out there, you're getting your hands full out there. a live update coming up next. [ male announcer ] if you've had a heart attack caused by a completely blocked artery, another heart attack could be lurking, waiting to strike. a heart attack that's caused by a clot, one that could be fatal.
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and we are following developing news from europe this morning. reporting italian bomb experts have defused an explosive package in rome. suspicious packages at other embassies have proven to be false alarms. just last week, bombs exploded at the chilean and swiss embassies in rome. an anarchist group claimed responsibility for last week's attacks. police say the package they found at the greek embassy was similar to the ones used last week. this monster blizzard hammering the northeast and grounding air travel across the country. this storm when all said and done could dump 30 inches of snow in some areas. right now, it's hammering new england, connecticut right in the thick of it. joining us on the phone is the commissioner of the department of emergency management in the state. thanks for being with us, peter. i know you're busy. hopefully we can get good information out to people in the area. the highways, i-95 in some parts shut down. what's the latest? >> the governor held a meeting
at 5:30 to review the situation with her state commissioners. 843 trucks out on the road, the connecticut national guard has pre-staged equipment at armories if needed. and our electric utilities are reporting just under 14,000 outages with an additional 16,000 that have already been restored through the night. >> and thank you for that update. what about the interstate right now? do you know anything about 95 being shut down? we got a notice saying because of a bunch of spinouts, they have shut down portions of it. >> we did have a report of down to one lane in the portion of i-95 going from connecticut into new york. over the last 12 hours, the connecticut state police has had over 975 calls for service. about 153 accidents, no fatalities, about 12 minor injuries through the night. >> and we are heading into the
morning commute. some people may already be trying to make their way in. what are the recommendations right now -- if you can't stay home, if you have to come into work and you're coming from connecticut to new york, what's your best bet right now? >> well, we're fortunate that the state has a furlough day today which will reduce traffic. many schools out, as well, which will also help. and again, the d.o.t. has over 800 trucks out right now. if you have to be on the road, of course, the rule of the day is take it slow, the roads have been plowed, but are still snow-covered. so keep the speed down. and if you don't have to go out, the governor has asked people to stay off the roads unless absolutely necessary. >> also -- not only the snow on the roads, but it's very hard to see. people need to remember the -- the winds are blowing snow. and it's difficult -- places that may look familiar to you, suddenly it's difficult to make your way around. the other question is public transportation. how are you guys doing in terms
of your bus service? your train service? your rail? >> connecticut d.o.t. reported at the 5:30 meeting this morning that bus lines are running, metro north had reported a stoppage on the new haven line due to mechanical problems. and you make a great point about visibility. even though the roads have been plowed and those trucks are still out there, we are still in the middle of that blizzard. blizzard warnings remain up in the state. until noon today. so in addition to the snow, strong winds remain, and so visibility is an issue, as well as you've pointed out. and that's another reason to keep the speeds slow. >> i was surprised, as well, that your airport, bradley international airport is open. >> that's correct. >> and flights are leaving. how is that able to happen? as we know here in new york, all of our major airports have shut down. >> well, bradley stayed open through the night, able to receive flights. many flights had already been
canceled, so they weren't coming in. but they were open to receive flights and d.o.t. reports they're still open this morning. they're doing a great job clearing snow despite the conditions. >> right. people can check out bradleyairport.com if they want information on that. and as we said, we're dealing with some tough road conditions out there. so if you are traveling in the state, be careful. on top of that, i know you have a coastal flood advisories in the area. what should people know? >> well, conditions along the shoreline can be hazardous with this type of storm activity. the high winds -- we recorded gusts of up to 60 miles an hour in several communities along the coast last night. and also in the capital city of hartford. so be aware of those conditions along the shoreline. governor held a call with over 200 officials from local towns, including shore line communities yesterday in preparation for the storm and those shoreline conditions can be especially
hazardous given that high water warning. >> absolutely. well, thanks for the update this morning. i know as you said also, some areas experiencing outages, working to get that back up and running. thanks so much. >> thank you. >> good information there. and it's important to point out that, you know, some of the pressure readings from this storm are similar to what you would find in a category two hurricane. so when you're talking about 80-mile-per-hour wind gusts out on long island, people in this area need to realize that even though it looks spectacular and you want to get in it, you could be taking a huge risk to do something. >> i would never dream of taking my minivan out or sedan, but a lot of people who have a 4 by 4 or four-wheel drive think they're invincible on the roads. it's tough out there. >> and you don't know because your four-wheel drive vehicle was getting in this morning. >> yeah, i don't own one -- >> the service that brought you
in -- >> yeah, we had to get somebody with a four-wheel drive. and we were sliding all over the place. >> take care out there. now, we are following some other stories this morning because every once in a while you have to keep it on the lighter side. keep in mind here, this has happened before. hugh hefner, the twice divorced founder of "playboy" magazine. his wife a 24-year-old play mate. the happy couple up next in our morning talkers. developments in the northeast storm. the fury of this blizzard. right now you're looking at a live picture at 5th avenue in new york city. this time of day, it's packed normally filled with yellow cabs and so on. and there you see it. more winds and intense snow. we're also learning that amtrak is resuming limited service between boston and new york. so call ahead. try to figure out the situation there. maybe that'll be your way home today. live report coming up. rs. >> boy: go down, down, down. down. straight. go straight.
time for our morning talkers. it was a very merry christmas for the world's number one playboy. hugh hefner proposed to his fiance on christmas eve. apparently tweeted it out, is that right? >> yeah, he tweeted he got everything he wished for, crystal's love. >> he is so hip. the bride to be, 24 years old, you may remember her as ms. december 2009. sh will be hefner's third marriage. his first marriage back in 1959. he and his former girlfriends were on a reality show. >> she left and the other ones left and this was a new crop of girlfriends, but he asked this one to marry him. so -- >> i didn't know that. you learn something new. well, they survived 69 days trapped in a mine and became international superstars. now they're going to disney. the 33 chilean miners are heading down to orlando at the end of january. it's an all expenses paid vacation for their family
members, six nights. the group will also serve as the honorary grand marshals at the parade. >> get a little tricky, don't want them to get stuck on space mountain. >> i don't think anything can shake or rattle them after surviving what they did. ben stiller and robert de niro back on top at the box office. raked in $34 million at the box office. the third installment in the "meet the parents" franchise. "true grit" landed in the number two spot with jeff bridges, cohen brothers, that took in $26 million. >> you would have seen it, but you were busy seeing -- nothing to be embarrassed about. >> oh, i saw "tron" in 3-d. i was embracing my inner geek. remembering that when i was just a kid and i had to go see it. plus also had jeff bridges. >> was it good? >> i liked it. >> it was i liked it. heading to the airport today. well the east coast blizzard is stalling holiday air traffic.
likely to spin off another day. a live report from laguardia airport coming up. plus, amtrak is slowly but surely coming back online this morning. we've got you covered there after the break. stick around. come celebrate exciting cars that are stunning to look at, exhilarating to drive and worry free to own. celebrate this holiday season with the gift of platinum. jaguar platinum coverage: five years or 50,000 miles of complimentary scheduled maintenance, and no cost replacement of wear and tear items. visit your jaguar dealer during the platinum celebration for a $599 lease offer on the 2011 xf.
i'd get this tightness in my chest. so i went back to my doctor again. we chose symbicort to help control my asthma symptoms all day and night. [ man ] symbicort improves my lung function, starting within 15 minutes. symbicort will not replace a rescue inhaler for sudden symptoms. it is a combination of two medicines and should not be taken more often than prescribed. symbicort contains formoterol. medicines like formoterol increase the risk of death from asthma problems, and children and adolescents may have an increased risk of being hospitalized for asthma problems. symbicort is not for people whose asthma is well controlled with a long-term asthma control medicine like inhaled corticosteroids. once your asthma is well controlled, your doctor will decide if you can stop symbicort without loss of control, and prescribe a long-term asthma control medicine. be sure to see your doctor if your asthma does not improve or gets worse. symbicort is a good choice to help control my asthma all day and night.
[ inhales ] [ exhales ] ask your doctor if symbicort is a good choice for you. [ male announcer ] if you can't afford your medication, astrazeneca may be able to help. we make it up as we go along. >> we are this morning. we've got our skeleton crew here. we made it. there were many of us who did not make it because of flights, unable to passing the roads. >> planes, trains, and automobiles. >> 2,000 flights canceled, laguardia, jfk, and newark, all
shut down to air traffic. and as this blizzard buries the northeast this morning, a lot of holiday travelers spent the night at the airport with nowhere else to stay and no other way out by car or train. and new developments in the possible terrorism plot in the uk. nine terrorism suspects will be officially charged in a london courtroom today. the arrests came after months of surveillance and monitoring by police and mi-5 officers. police say the suspects did reconnaissance on potential targets and even tested some explosives. the alaska senate race may finally be over. joe miller says he'll no longer stand in the way of lisa murkowski being certified the winner. he does say, though, he plans to file a federal lawsuit that challenges the state's handling of the vote count. murkowski launched a write-in campaign after losing to miller in the primary. the most snow in the morning, the monster blizzard in the northeast happening right now. we are learning that amtrak is
resuming limited service between boston and new york. but cancellations affected close to 10,000 train passengers on one of the busiest travel days of the year. joining me on the phone is cliff cole. good morning, cliff, thanks for joining us and giving us the latest on this. we understand that service is resuming between boston and new york. tell us what the situation is right now. how are folks doing? >> well, we did resume service between boston and new york. and good morning to both of you. about 6:15 this morning with a train out of boston. and we are going to be running limited service between boston and new york today. so that is better news than yesterday when we had to cancel eight trains between those two points because of the blizzard condition. >> and cliff, if i could just relate my own personal story. i was trying to get up to new york yesterday. and all of the trains were sold out getting from d.c. up to new york pretty much through the middle of the afternoon and i remember going to the kiosk and just swiping my credit card every couple of minutes until a
ticket popped up. i guess for those folks who can't get tickets i suppose because of the nature of the storm and cancellations and people giving up on trying to get out of town that there may be some tickets that pop up from time to time right before these trains depart at their departure time. may not be too bad off to see if they can somehow get home. >> that's always the case. when we have trains that are on a limited schedule and the weather's this bad, a lot of folks can't get out today. if you're not too far away from a station and you would like to try and see if you could get a ticket, that wouldn't be, you know, a horrible idea. and as you said yesterday, christmas week was amtrak's busiest travel day of the year. the timing of the blizzard couldn't be worse. >> has amtrak dealt with this in the northeast corridor in recent memory that you can recall? this is -- this is pretty incredible what we're witnessing right now. >> reporter: yeah, we've dealt with blizzards before in the
northeast corridor. and actually, we sit down and make decisions based upon not only the snow, but the wind and the ice and whether or not we feel that the trip would go from point "a" to point "b," and the experts we use within our transportation and engineering department determined yesterday it wasn't prudent to send people out in those conditions with the fear they would not be able to make it to the end point. so we do deal with snow. the trains can run with snow, we have mechanisms built in on the tracks to alleviate icing conditions. so we can deal with snow better than some of the other modes of transportation, but when you get a storm of this magnitude, again, just to play it safe, that's the decision we would make 100% of the time. >> what kind of impact are you seeing from all of those air travelers. all those folks who, you know, saw their flights scrubbed for perhaps a couple of days now. they probably will be going to the train station i would imagine.
are you able to handle that sort of influx of passengers at this point? or are many of these trains fully booked? >> well, i don't know about the reservations for the trains today. but if it's a carryover from yesterday, many of the trains are already booked. and as you mentioned, we already had sold out trains yesterday, even before we knew there was going to be a blizzard coming up the east coast. >> because this is combining with the holiday crash at the same time. i mean, all that huge crush of travelers around the holidays, this is all happening at the same time as this blizzard. >> right. and i guess one would say, you know, if there's a chance to travel even some of the airports are recovering. if there's a train that's running and you need to get home, a lot of people want to get home, it's worth calling 1-800-usa-rail to see if you can get a ticket. >> thanks for your time, sir, appreciate it. >> sure. >> well, as we -- as he said, you know, they're looking for plan "b," especially stuck at
these airports, the nor'easter has grounded 2,000 flights. that adds up to hundreds of thousands of people. in some cases with no places to go. all three of the major airports are closed to traffic and not planning to open for hours. >> and now we have updated opening times from the faa and they're pretty unbelievable when you consider just the load of passengers coming through this area. newark opens at 12:00 p.m. eastern, laguardia, 2:00 p.m. and jfk is at 4:00 p.m. right now according to the faa. and allan chernoff is live at laguardia this morning. and looks like another weary traveler with you. i'm guessing there's no shortage of those. >> that's right, jim. say good morning. he's just woken up, he's been sleeping on a cot in the corridor between the main terminal and the garage. how are you doing? >> doing well, doing well, how
about yourself? >> just fine. i got a little sleep last night, how about you? >> i got about 2 to 2 1/2 hours of sleep. it was real bad. everyone was struggling up there, not enough blankets, not enough supply of beds. so it's been tough. >> not actual beds, but cots. how comfortable? >> very uncomfortable. >> now, you had a flight from new york to chicago, 2:30 yesterday afternoon. you knew the flight on american was canceled, but you came to the airport anyway, why? >> because i was trying to get accommodated. for instance, such as vouchers or hotel stay or something. >> you were hoping the airline would give you a free hotel? >> right. >> but the airline said since the weather conditions are bad, it's not their fault. so i couldn't get accommodated. we ended up staying at the airport. >> at least new york city, the port authority here put you up at the airport. sorry we couldn't find better accommodations over here.
1 of 250 people stranded here at laguardia airport overnight, still plenty of people upstairs sleeping on their cot, trying to at least get some sleep. his buddy is also -- he just went back to sleep. he didn't want to come down with him. guys, it's certainly been a rough go of it here. but probably even tougher for the guys working outside. some of them putting in 14-hour shifts, most 12-hour shifts. but let me tell you, the wind vicious. last night, the general manager of laguardia told us the winds were 60 miles an hour. and he said that's the main reason that the airport had to shut down. the snow just blowing all over the place. jim, kiran? >> yeah, you put all the hassles aside. you want to be safe. the worst-case scenario if something were to go wrong. we did get updated times. as you indicated, didn't look like they were able to make that 2:00 p.m. opening time there.
all new york area airports pushed back their opening to 4:00 p.m. and that's up in the air. >> that's probably wishful thinking because of the nature of the storm. we're still seeing a lot of of wind out there. when that is, you know, when that's happening, the faa's going to take every precaution imaginable to make sure folks are safe. >> right. the blizzard warning in effect until this afternoon. so blizzard-like conditions throughout the afternoon. o so it is going to make travel tough. well, you've heard the phrase many happy returns? >> absolutely. >> do you return stuff after christmas? >> i'm going to keep that to myself. i love all my gifts. they were all great. thank you. well, unless you read the fine print, the returns may not be happening in your favor. christine romans coming up next on getting the most for those gifts you don't want. stick around for that. ♪ i hate suburbia and the bourgeoi-sie ♪ ♪ but i really love my bank ♪ i hate--
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gifts. >> christine romans is minding -- minding your business this morning. she joins us now. and let's face it, returns happen, right? >> they happen. and they're not happening today, hopefully, because you're an idiot if you're standing in lines today. don't go out in a blizzard to return your gifts. we know that there are really tough return policies, but they're not that tough. >> you're going to get so many e-mails. >> why? >> "a," idiot, but all these poor people who shovelled out the parking lot and christine says, stay home. >> a third of you will return at least one gift. we know it's a fact of life. and consumer reports say you can to spend an hour online to return those gifts. here's what you need to know. there have been some more consumer-friendly return fee policies over the past year or so. these are still a moving target. you can't hold on to a gift forever even with a receipt to return it some places. toys r us you've got 90 days to return it, used to be 30 days.
macy's has dropped the 180-day limit. amazon.com you can send unopened books, cds, dvds up to 30 days. you don't have to brave the weather today to do it. but you need to do it in the next -- within the next month or so. also so you don't forget it. good returns are part of good customer service. and consumers are more picky now. so customer service has to be a little bit better. watch out for the restocking fees. i hate them. but especially for electronics, you can return something even unopened and they can say we're going to charge you 20% for that. >> nowadays, you may not need your receipt anymore to return things. you have the credit card you made the purchase with. it can be returned, which is incredible. >> and i did this recently at a home depot, it was like that. it was a real snap. and also, amazon.com, we are told has patented some technology to allow you to return something before you even get it. think of that. you get an e-mail in your inbox
that says aunt gertrude bought you this item. do you want us to ship it to you or you want the credit? that's so wrong. >> the price -- the spirit -- >> 30% of gifts bought online are returned. you think about the logistics of buying it, packaging, sending it, sending it back. >> that's why regifting makes more sense. >> if you do it proposerly, it's sometimes okay. >> good. >> thank you for braving the elements coming in this morning. >> well, i heard you were in town, jim, so i thought a little nor'easter won't stop me. >> she made it from new jersey. >> the george washington bridge is beautiful. looking at the snow-capped city. >> yeah, i had to keep my eyes closed the whole way. >> beautiful and deadly. >> you can pick up christine's book -- no one's returning this "smart is the new rich." >> i don't think you can. >> no-return policy.
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all right. welcome back to the most snow in the morning. good morning, new york. you're pretty much right in the middle of the bull's eye here of this brricane. 23 degrees right now. and this is just a stunning sight to behold. >> i know. here's another shot this morning. this is another one of our tower cameras at 59th and 5th avenue. and that bus is stuck. so i mean even if you're trying
to take public transportation, you're trying to stay off the roads, it's not easy going out there. it's just -- it was hard for, you know, sanitation to keep up. in fact, i heard on the radio this morning when i was coming in. they said if you happen to have a front-end loader or one of those c.a.t. vehicles, to call 911, they may need you. and it's not just the buses. apparently there have been some of the problems on the new york city service. >> try to get updated on that as well. >> economic ahead. >> they are having trouble. i don't know if they are on line keeping up with the trouble they had. it's a tough day if you have to be in. >> absolutely. >> you get a gold star if you came in. >> just like we did. it is 50 minutes after the hour. let's go to reynolds in the extreme weather center. and reynolds, we saw that bus that was stuck there right by central park, rob marciano's bus stuck. not a good time to be on a bus. >> bad time for buses. it is not a day for buses. truly is not.
got some good news and bad news with regard to buses and everyone else. the good news that weather conditions are going to improve later this afternoon and evening. tomorrow we should have sunshine and in the eastern seaboard. the bad news is this is the beginning of winter. this is early winter so. we're probably going to have a few more shots of this stuff for the next couple of months. let's be prepared for the issues at the airports. we're rattling on about it all morning. more about jfk, laguardia and even newark, all closed. if your idea was to go to a smaller airport you're going to run into the same result. new haven, winsor locks closed. one of the reasons not due to the snowfall but because of the strong winds. we have had estimated wind gusts up to 60, 70, 80 miles an hour. some recorded gusts recently. over 50 in boston, newport, newark, over into hartford we have 47 miles per hour and still the winds keep coming in. one thing is interesting about this. you guys call this a burricane.
it has a structure similar to a hurricane. on the coast heavier action. in white plains, newark, we're seeing the heavy snowfall fading off. farther west we see a few more bands coming through so. there is the potential we could have, again, kind of sporadic effect. you get a break, more snow. another round comes through. in providence looking good, 20s and 30s now. new port, the snow coming through. i want to show you what you can expect around the nation. the snow biz in the northeast. 3 tate high in atlanta, 40 in kansas city, 35 in salt lake city and 66 in san diego, rain in seattle with 48 your expected high. you're up to speed. so much more coming up. watching cnn "american morning." [ male announcer ] how can rice production in india
affect wheat output in the u.s., the shipping industry in norway, and the rubber industry in south america? at t. rowe price, we understand the connections of a complex global economy. it's just one reason os beat their10-year lipp. t. rowe price.invest . request a prospectus or summary prospectus with investment objectives, risks, fees, expenses, and other information to read and consider carefully before investing. >> 55 minutes past the hour. we're getting information coming in right now about this blizzard. we want to get you updated. the airlines, 2,000 flights canceled which means tens of thousands of passengers and we know the storm is still happening so you've got to call ahead. if you are at the airports it looks like the wait continues today. >> the faa says that the
estimated times for reopening those airports have now been pushed back to 4:00 for newark, laguardia, and jfk. so if you are stranded at those airports watching us now, folks, grab another cup of coffee or take another nap because this is going to be a long wait for you. as our allen mentioned at laguardia earlier this morning when it was 2:00 estimated reopening time earlier this morning that got pushed back to 4:00, you know, these discussions are sort of happening in real time so people have to keep that in mind. also amtrak has, on a positive note, resumed service in the northeast corridor between new york and boston so that is good news for those travelers. >> and we have another story about a subway train. this is on the a line and a train that was stranded in queens. according to mta spokesman, hours it's stranded but not confirming some of the published reports say up to five hours and people are -- can get off if
they want to. because it's in a strange location, the broad channel station, some are stayinging on the train and the mta is trying to get a diesel locomotive to get the passengers away from the location and move them on. they say they don't really know how long they have been stranded or how many but it could be hundreds. >> as rens ren was pointing out earlier, this burricane is like a hurricane. as time goes on throughout the morning we're going to find out slowly but surely the spread of this damage across this area. and it's going to be extensive. there are going to be trees down, power lines that are down, people dealing without power for several hours perhaps days. >> right. every person that we've spoken to that is in emergency management or government official has said if at all possible and do you not have to leave your house don't do it. people are doing all they can to get the roads cleared but it's treacherous in many parts of the eastern seaboard today. >> we'll have more in a few moments. stick with us. the most snow in the morning
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-- captions by vitac -- www.vitac.com >> good morning. welcome back to the most snow in the morning. it's monday, december 27th. i'm jim acosta. >> i'm kiran chetry. when it's said and done we could get 30 inches in places. that's 30 inches on the ground. on top of that all of the blowing and drifting snow, plus if you get plowed in it's a
mess. a monster blizzard wreaking havoc in the northeast. thousands of holiday travelers are stuck. airlines have had to cancel flights throughout the northeast and airports may not reopen for hours. we have updated opening times for the new york area airports and we'll have those in a moment. >> a lot of information coming in on the trains, the subways in new york which are also affected. many people are camping out simply at the airport this morning. they really have no alternative. there are no guarantees. they will be taking off today or tomorrow. we'll hear from one man who spent the entire night after christmas on the tarmac. >> we continue to follow news from europe. rome's police chief says attempted bombing at the greek embassy is related to other similar bombings in the city last week. italian bomb experts defused a package. they are finding packages at other embassies. those were false alarms. last week bombs exploded in
rome. a group claimed responsibility for last week's attacks. >> it's a holiday travel nightmare. thousands of flyers are stranded as this monster blizzard pounds the northeast. snow emergencies declared in four states and several major cities including philadelphia and boston. some places expecting almost 2 1/2 feet of snow by the time it's all over. >> right now things are at a standstill at new york's major airports. newark, laguardia and jfk are closed now. the updated times from the faa, it was noon and 2:00 p.m. for newark and laguardia. now all three not opening until 4:00 p.m. >> we're keeping our fingers crossed on those. >> right. they may not be able to get up and running by 4:00. even if they are up and running if you had a canceled flight can you get out. just an estimate, is it tens of thousands of people that are stranded right now because of the cancellations?
>> reporter: certainly tens of thousands around the northeast, no doubt about that because it's not just here at laguardia but airports from boston down to washington, d.c. here at laguardia, we basically got a game of can you top this, and i'm talking about nightmare scenarios. i mean, one story seems to be worse than the next. have a listen to what julie stratton is going to tell us. julie has been here at laguardia airport now for 24 hours. julie has just woken up. spent the night on a cot. >> yes. >> how are the accommodations upstairs in the hallway between the terminal and the garage? >> a little rough, but at least it was better than the floor. >> so at least you got what, couple hours sleep? >> couple hours. >> okay. that's not the worst of it for julie. now, she was supposed to fly out yesterday, right, trying to get to indianapolis. on airtran. >> yes. >> when do they say you can get
out now? >> thursday at 6:00. >> it's monday morning now. 8:00. you were supposed to get out yesterday. you're being told that you won't be able to leave here until thursday. when would you actually get into indianapolis? >> friday morning. >> overnight through a connection, and then finally drive home to columbus? >> correct. >> i would imagine you're not too happy at the moment. >> it's not -- it's not the best of scenarios, no. >> i'm hoping that something is going to come through that you'll be able to get some other flight. are you hopeful? >> yes, we are. >> okay. julie, you seem in extremely good humor considering the situation. >> you just have to make the best of it. there is nothing else we can do so we make the best of it. >> well spoken. thank you. that is the attitude that we've heard from so many of the people stranded here. 250 according to the laguardia
general manager, 250 people slept overnight here at the airport. jim, kiran. >> seems like everybody is taking it in stride so far. that's a good thing. >> reporter: what can you do. i mean, mother nature is all powerful in these situations. often people love to blame the airlines, the airlines in this case generally did their absolute best. they told people well in advance, and the vast, vast majority of people never came to the airport and are glad that they didn't. >> that was the right decision. you got to feel for people who just got stuck between connections and can't get back to their destination and don't have anywhere to go. allen at laguardia, thanks so much. we talk about how bad it is to be stuck in a terminal, way worse to be stuck on the tarmac in a plane. that happened to more than one plane, actually. >> absolutely. we got a dramatic telling of this earlier this morning. our sister network cnn international got in touch with
a passenger on a flight at jfk that was sitting on the tarmac for, get there, eight hours. listen to this. >> it must be miserable on boards. what are you people doing? >> people right now are actually sleeping but for the first few hours people were going in and out of sort of you know, they are on the lap tops, reading, listening to music. then people got up and started talking, conversations. i got to tell you, the crew has been fantastic. the captain kopt us appraised up until now about updates, there hasn't been one in the last few hours because of the conditions. but the crew has served us dinner and people have been in good spirits. >> he said the flight was seconds from taking off. wouldn't you know it. from the airport. so, but apparently we do know that the plane did get pulled back to the terminal so those folks were able to get off the plane. at least on that accord. >> allen was telling us he had sent an e-mail, speaking to somebody trying to talk to a
relative who was aboard a delta flight that was supposed to go to tel aviv stuck on the tarmac. on the roads no better. snow emergencies in place across the northeast. they are asking everybody to stay off the roads if you don't have to be anywhere. they also talk about taking mass transit. but that's actually turning troublesome in cases as well. >> yeah. mass transit not necessarily working as our rob marciano can tell us live in stamford, connecticut where he had a bus stuck behind him at one point and a bus stuck in front of him which made it hard to see rob. how's it going now? >> reporter: well, that's not necessarily a bad thing. good morning guys. the snow continues to blow. on cue, here comes mass transit. you're going to see me disappear in a second. we've got snow drifts that are three, four feet in spots. a bus 24-b going to fairfield avenue is running. i can tell you that.
behind this bus stop is town hall which the stairs to the town hall have not been shoveled. clearly. so not sure if the government offices are open for business but there are some businesses that are open. folks are milling about trying to get around as best they could. this yard stick, obviously completely buried. this is a snow bank but there are strips of snow that go up and over three neext is the bus stop we had two buses stranded earlier today. had to get the snow truck out or the tow truck out to get those out of there. so they are trying to do the best they can as far as mass transit goes but the buses are up and uning albeit some get stuck from time to time. the trains, the commuter trains i-95 corridor here t metro north, the blizzard has caused switch failures, equipment failures so metro north, new haven line is shut for now. the same with long island railroad so this is crippled a number of what are usually
reliable sources of transportation during blizzards. we have about 15,000 people without power. a lot of the people are walking down the street because the sidewalks are dangerous and snow covered where the streets arlittle more plowed. unin massachusetts we have not only issues with winds gusting to 80 miles an hour last night so we had about 26,000 people without power but coastal flooding south of boston. a few communities are evacuated, at least early this morning because of those situations. you know, this yard stick by the way, guys, this is from mom's place. mom made several -- gone through several sewing ventures with this. christmas night having din wer the folks, reverse 911 call to announce the incoming blizzard. i never experienced that as a child or adult. give you an idea of the severity of this situation. and if you don't have to go out don't do it. some spots are open. i spoke to a woman today a few
minutes ago taking the bus, bus 44 to get to her job at fairway market. because the grocery store, you got to feed people. >> sure do. >> dig down and get through this. we'll dig out of this eventually but it's going to abslow go. >> i think earlier we talked to the emergency management chief in connecticut. i think there is a state furlough. that's why city hall is closed and everything else. it's you, the dunkin donuts guys. >> and people are walking through his live shot probably because the middle of the road is the only place that is safe to walk right now in some of these areas. i remember that walking in this morning. right? the sidewalks aren't going to be cleared in a lot of cities. >> no. everybody's, the foot traffic and bus traffic is all going through the road as well as plows so a bit of a dangerous go. you got to watch what's coming at you from behind because it's going to be a bus or snow plow, neither of which could lead to a good result. yeah, i guess government offices
are furloughed and kids have the day off. enjoy it if you got it. if you got to get to it, be careful and allow extra time. >> rob marciano with another bus behind him in the background. this would be a good time to leave rob at this point. thanks, rob. our reynolds wolf is in the extreme weather center tracking this all morning as well. >> when the heck is this getting out of here? >> that's a great question. really depends on where you happen to be. if you are in washington, d.c. or philadelphia, you're going to recover faster than people that are closer to the coast. for rob it's going to be a time and for his friends in that part of the world tough going. we have the blizzard warning through noon. a little bit of an interesting fact. do you know you can have a blizzard without any precipitation? you get snow on the ground but without any snow falling from the sky. a blizzard is primarily a wind event. in terms of wind we've had plenty of it. check out some of these gusts.
talking about some that were hurricane force. we got those. wellfleet, massachusetts, 80 miles per hour. orleans, 79 miles per hour gust. tropical storm force in new haven, boston and newportment we may get strong gusts into the afternoon, should be subsiding as we fast forward into the evening. and those winds are the key reason why we have so many of these airport delays and closures. in new york, jfk, laguardia, over in jersey and newark some closures there. atlantic city and even some of the regional airports in new haven, newburgh and winsor locks all closed for the time being. hopefully these will open later this afternoon. certainly by tomorrow. again we've got a bit of recovery in places like philadelphia but up the pike we go to the north we've gots the scattered snow showers coming down across long island. newark catching a little break. white plain you look up you might see sunshine. but more snow is on the way. farther up to boston, and what's is interesting on the cape it's
rain. you cross over to new bedford and back in boston, it's complete snow with the berkshires it's been snowing nonstop. across the nation, the big pocket of rough weather is in the northeast. to the northwest basically the same deal. the cascades extreme northern rockies snow in the valleys and the i-5 corridor rain. salt lake city 35 the high. 40 in kansas city, 63 in san antonio and atlanta lo and behold 38 degrees. back to you guys. >> sounds good. >> warmer already. >> yeah. 38 sounds downright toasty if you're sitting here. thanks. >> he is walking again t spider man actor who fell more than 20 feet during a stunt gone wrong. but will he make it back to the broadway show? the answer is coming up.
this rare snowstorm is leading to some dangerous conditions down in north carolina this morning. >> i can't believe how -- >> everything is a mess. >> how affected everything is by this storm. it's unbelievable. and we're not the only ones, by the way. dealing with this. in raleigh, north carolina they were dealing with bad weather including black ice. we're going to check in now with our affiliate reporter jessica is in raleigh right now. you're not used to this, are you. >> reporter: no.
you are exactly right. the tar heel state is not used to this especially not early in december. we see some of this the end of january but you know, these d.o.t. crews are at it again. they worked 24 hours straight. back on the roads again because this is the mess they have to deal with. see all of this frozen mess, all the ice and causing black ice and that is dangerous for cars. officials say the road looks deceiving because the interstates and the highways are clear, but you have patches of that black ice out there. they want you to be careful. today they are going to focus on secondary roads. they weren't able to get to them much yesterday because they had to focus on the interstates. as soon as they were clearing them like the snow was coming down so quickly it didn't look like they plowed at all. across the state the icy roads were to blame for three fatalities. they want to make sure that drivers are safe out there. they are going to do what they can. they said 50 crews are going to
be out on the roads here and they -- in the triangle area. they brought in contractors to help out. about a dozen snow graders along with a dozen they have. so they are going to be out there as long as they can. reporting from raleigh. >> jessica, thanks so much. >> down south too. >> the black ice is just, i mean, it makes it impossible to drive on. they are trying to keep up. also new this morning spider man is on the road to recovery. a welcome relief after this fall, chris ter tyranny, the actor who fell 30 feet, the problem with the rope and the harness left him tumbling head first into that pit. he's walking again after back surgery. still in intensive care. doctors told his family he is lucky to be alive. his dad says he can't wait to get back to playing the role. spider man has dealt with a series of injuries and temporary delays down for a two-day delay after the accident.
>> and a tell-all about telling all, also this morning the man behind wikileaks, julian assange has signed a $1.3 million book deal. he says he doesn't want to write it but needs the money to keep the website afloat and pay legal fees to cover lawsuits relating to the site, defending himself in sweden and so on. bank of america, mastercard and pay pal cut off wikileaks. >> let's take a live picture of the weather. this is the ben franklin bridge in philadelphia this morning. a little windy as you can see from the towercam. doesn't look like much traffic. >> no. a little chilly in the city of brotherly love. could use that love to keep warm. eagles fans have to wait until tomorrow night to get their football game because of all of the snow. stick around. we'll have all of that coming up. plus a lot more on the travel situation which is still a nightmare.
it's a little gross. we'll admit it. >> the number one play boy is tying the knot again. okay. hugh hefner says he proposed to his fiancee. the bride to be 24, crystal harris, you may know her as miss december 2009. i think i heard one of our crew members saying nice. >> really. 60-year age difference. you want your dad's wife to be 35 years younger than you? i don't know. >> it's going to be his third marriage, his first was in 1959. hef is 84 years old. >> age is just a number.
survived 69 days trapped in a mine. the chilean miners and their families getting a great trip. they are heading to orlando to disney world the end of january. disney is hosting them and their families for a six-night stay. they are going to serve as the grand marshalls at a parade. that's pictures of them at our cnn heroes event. they all look wonderful. they look in such great shape. >> and they earned a trip to disney world, i think. the fockers are back on top. i said fockers. the third edition to the meet the parents franchise raked in $34 million this weekend at the box office, the comedy stars ben stiller. the remake of the true grit, this is number two in the box office. and beat expectations some of our movie buffs saying. $26 million. >> they didn't know it was going to be a commercial success at the box office. looks like it is so far. >> the dude strikes again. >> he does.
bristol palin is a homeowner, she is moving to phoenix. >> i didn't know "dancing with the stars" paid that well. >> i guess it does. though housing right now in phoenix, you can get deals. the arizona republican reports that sarah palin's daughter bought a house in an arizona suburb for $172,000. it's not clear why but she may attend arizona state university. >> how about that. if you had a flight booked, you lose. but some people will come out of the blizzard of 2010 big winners. we're talking about that all the morning, the economy, lots of people buying snow blowers and so forth. we want a live look at boston at this point. we have that shot to throw up. they are getting nailed. the brrr-icane moved up the coast to massachusetts. so batten down the hatches, folks. it's rough out there. we'll check in and how things are going at massachusetts as well. what this paint's got: and that's a number one rating.
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live picture of hartford, connecticut. >> we said that the airport was open, it isn't. it's supposed to open in about -- within the hour. >> 9:00 a.m. >> a lot of this is touch and go. they are trying to figure out, trying to assess the conditions, try to figure out if it's going to blow off shore and they are getting the heavy winds, a lot of blizzard like conditions. >> well, and the blizzard was bad news for most businesses up and down the northeast over the last 24 hours. >> if you weren't peddling in rock salt and shovels. other stores loved it. christine romans is here to join us. a lot of retailers depend on the day after christmas. people return things, look for deals. >> and the day after. >> there are others peddling the snow shovels and the salt. anybody out there with their snow blower, charge twog 5 bucks to do your neighbor's yard.
all of these people are making money. t the losers, the airlines, folks doing the trains, the buses, if you are going to lose money there that's not going to come back from a trip you lose the airline industry, all of the transportation industry is quaking right now. but there are winners to talk about. retailers seem to be losers on the front end but maybe 18 week they are going to revisit the sales again and going to find you more relaxed and with a little more money after your christmas hangover to spend more money. they can shake this off quickly, lowes and home depot, i was in lowes, they are winners, i'm telling you at the lowes every check-out had a pile of salt and selling salt and shovels. on the way out the door people picking up christmas trees and things from the holidays and other things so impulse buys were helping out. look, it's a blizzard in december. in the northeast. i mean, this happens.
so companies can shake it off pretty easily and make up for lost time later on. >> that's the thing i was wondering. we were talking about this earlier, that this was a really good holiday shopping season for retailers. so that's a good sign for the economy but a big part of this shopping season is that day after christmas, the days after christmas. is that going to affect the numbers? >> can they reschedule. >> i think you'll see sales next week. remember t door buster sales it's not really to sell the stuff, it's to get you to buy other stuff. you don't have a reason now. what they try to do is get you to spend your gift cards. you know that spring merchandise is the stuff that is rarely marked down. usually spend full price for spring merchandise. and they roll it out after christmas. why? because you are all flush with money from your returns and your gift cards. so you'll see the retailers trying to get you to spend on the spring merchandise which isn't marked down. a consumer tip.
do you need it in february if it's spring merchandise? think about that. but they are going to try to make up for lost time. you could see interesting sales over the next weeks. they kept inventories lean so they don't have a lot of stuff out to be selling for because we bought more than last year in the first place. >> christine, thanks so much. >> 2,000 canceled flights, laguardia, jfk, newark, the new york city's three major airports sthut air traffic as this blizzard buries the northeast. we're trying to dig out. they hope to reopen today, maybe not until late in the afternoon. 4:00 p.m. is the target time. a lot of holiday travelers spent the night at the airport. they had nowhere else to stay and no other way out by car or train. >> arizona state lawmaker is recovering after police say he was beaten and left unconscious in his own pool store christmas day. representative pratt, a 68-year-old republican found by his wife after the attack. a spokesman says the attacker took off in pratt's suv.
he is in stable condition at a hospital. has president obama kicked the habit on state of the union yesterday press secretary robert gibbs said the president quit smoking months ago and didn't light up on the awful midterm election night. than time it may stick. >> i can report that it's been probably about nine months since he last smoked a cigarette. he has done enormously well in quitting. it was a commitment that i think he made to himself at the end of health care, and with his two daughters in mind. >> gibbs said this is the longest period in eight years that he's known the president that he has gone without a cigarette. >> good luck. keep it up. snow emergencies in place across the northeast this morning. everyone is encouraged to stay off the roads by taking mass transit. if that's even running. or, if you don't have to go anywhere stay at home. >> yes. and unfortunately our rob marciano who is live in stamford, connecticut could not
stay home. he's where they are -- my goodness. he has a shovel. you're not still digging out that bus, are you, rob? >> we got the bus out. we got to take care of the sidewalks. people are walking on the streets. it's dangerous. the streets are in safer condition than the sidewalks right now. christine mentioned kids going around and shoveling the driveway. i used this very shovel when i was a kid. i think my dad gave me about five bucks and the neighbors maybe less than that. got a lot of work to do. here is town hall. these steps are not clear at all. a little snow shovel and ice melt, you would need a lot more than this to get this sidewalk clear. but the sidewalk around the corner, dunkin donuts they are open. this has been a busy intersection for buses. we've seen a number get stuck here but they have done a pretty good job of getting them out and about. a couple of cabs coming through.
there has been a lot of foot traffic. that's the main way to get around in stamford, connecticut. the railways, there's limited service now from boston to new york. but metro north, the main line that takes commuters that go into new york city from here, that's shut down in both directions because of failed equipment because of the blizzard. the same deal long island railroad. the winds have been huge. reynolds mentioned 80 miles along cape cod. power lines are down. updated numbers, massachusetts over 40,000 people without power because ever these gusty winds and they are continuing and it's blowing this snow around. it's been a struggle this morning but the good news is the snow has stopped so even though traffic is pretty limited and there's not many people out and about, i suppose as the day goes along you'll start to see that. here comes another bus. it's pretty, guys. you get outside, in new york city the prettiness of it lasts what, maybe a couple hours
before it turns to a dirty old mess. but here in stamford, connecticut looks like with this government building closed this is town hall, this may stay pretty for maybe a half a day before everybody gets back to work tomorrow. >> rob, back to you guys in new york. >> rob, do not shovel the rest of the steps of city hall. >> they are furloughed. you should be too. >> i fear for your cardiovascular health. >> we'll see you later. >> we're talking a little about the travel nightmare. worse to be stuck on the tarmac. we heard three accounts of three planes where this happened to people stuck for hours. right now on the phone we have jason scheduled to fly from jfk to heathrow on virgin atlantic. ended up several hours stuck awlong other passengers. hey, good morning. >> good morning. >> so how did it end? >> i was stuck on the tarmac and at the airport.
i've been at jfk. it won't end when we're scheduled to try again. the first time we tried i don't know why because all of the other airlines canceled, we were stuck on the tarmac about 4 1/2 hours because we got snowed in as we tried to make our way. >> and jason, you are a travel writer, correct? >> that's right. >> we've got material in the making here for your next -- is it on line? in print? >> i work for aol, for wallet pop.com and write for aol travel and many other things. >> what's the storyline? >> i don't know if i'd want to revisit this for a book soon. who would want to read it. >> and you did blog about this the whole entire way through this. starting at 8:00 you're saying they refused to cancel early, booked all 250 people, you sit on the tarmac with no ac, then cancel. how long was it after you guys were on the tarmac before they
gave you information or told you when you may be off the plane? >> precious little. and you know how the airlines do it they promise you it's about to happen, about to happen and it never happens. so we would go hours between hearing anything. it hasn't stopped now on the ground because i don't think that virgin atlantic or many of the airlines are well equipped to be able to handle passengers who are stranded in these numbers at the airport. jfk right now is starting to run out of food. and unfortunately we can't leave. there are no roads or rails open. which is also the reason food hasn't been able to come to restock. >> how are the passengers holding up? obviously you and i, we've been at the airports in situations not bad but similar. are people taking this in stride? are they -- are folks starting to lose their cool? >> you would expect the lord of the flies type situation but it's not happening. people, i guess the word is dejected. there is no control that we have over this.
although we don't blame virgin atlantic for deciding to cancel the flight we do blame it for bringing us to the airport and getting us in this mess when all of the other airlines were canceling. the push back hasn't been extreme but you can feel people fraying. i think as the hunger starts to build and now that the news has sunk in we're not getting the hotels promised, we can't get to them i think you'll find people more testy. so far we're hanging in zblfrmt there's public transportation in and out of jfk. why are they not able to get you guys on even local buses? >> the public shut down. only two new york city subway lines are working right now. neither of them come here. and the roads are also just barely passable. i tried to get a taxi. he wanted to charge upward of $100 when the fare should be less than half that. that was the only taxi i've seen. they are not coming. >> not a low lot. i didn't either. i didn't know if the mta has bus service, i don't know if they are going to be hopefully
rerouting some of those buses or trying to get more throughout to the airport for you guys. you note how frustrating it is. you live 10 miles from the airport. i bet you would walk it. >> if i could. i don't know i could get back to try again tonight and what i want most of to be able to finish my travel. >> jason, keep tweeting, blogging about the progress over there at jfk. keep us apprised of the food situation. jason cochran, aol roving reporter we appreciate you coming on and giving us the latest. hang in there. >> good luck. hope you get there soon.
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busy morning this morning. hope you're staying safe. welcome back. let's go right now to reynolds wolf in the extreme weather center. doesn't get more extreme than this morning. we're talking about this brrr-icane. it has many of the same features. the wind speed, the gusts out on long island have been incredible. >> even the shape is similar. you have the big vortex of amazing weather. and the delays we have and closures in the airports are mind boggling. let's show people the bad news we have. take a look. you see the airports here in front of you, you have new york, jfk, laguardia, even newark, closed this time. teterboro also closed. joining in atlantic city,
windsor locks. hopefully reopening later today. the reason for most, not just the scope, because of the incredible winds. some gusts around 70 to 80 miles per hour. perfect example along the coast and other parts of massachusetts we had 79 miles per hour gusts in new haven. 52 in boston. newport at 49. what we're going to see with this is a lot of snow. on the surface kicked up by the wind gusts, a lot of headaches, poor visibility on the roadways. something else we're going to deal with out there, will be the strong wind gusts and rough conditions along the coast. certainly some waves very, very large along the maine coast south to long island, even along atlantic city we see scattered snow showers there, along the same situation. edison a break for the time being but up toward white
plains, getting a little bit of the showers coming through t snow showers. a little break and then another band that will come through. that's basically the nature through a good part of the day into the afternoon. boston, all snow but your neighbors on the cape it's mostly a rain event. we're going to follow this weather story. it's going to be a big one. a lot of people stuck in place, hate to give you that bad news but sometimes the weather gods put you you in boston or new york, make the most of it. enjoy the extra day. a little silver lining on. back to you. >> i think you can sell that to everybody but those trapped at the airport. >> try to be optimistic. there you go. >> we'll get through it together. >> we'll show you, speaking of hope, we hope this bus will finally -- this is 45 minutes after we showed you this. stuck on fifth avenue and 59th street in new york city can't seem to get moving. >> that's a live shot. >> we did find out, we talked about the stranded "a" train they got a locomotive to pull
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live picture of hartford connecticut. hartford of course also in the thick of it with the blizzard, still see the tower camera sort of jostling around there. not as bad as it has been, though. >> yeah. things are improving slightly. in portions of new jersey, new york and connecticut, now the storm is moving toward maine, massachusetts, you know, the upper -- >> hopefully offshore. >> we hope. but this is going to take time. >> there's a picture now, the blizzard conditions are still in effect in many areas. so, it's not over yet but hopefully we're seeing a light at the end of the tunnel. there's about 2,000 flights canceled because of this that left tens of thousands of air travelers all stranded, all three of new york's major airpo airports closed. and they are not planning to reopen until this afternoon. >> the faa released new reopening times. they are all pushed back a bit.
all three airports slated to open at 4:00 eastern, but as our allen chern november will tell us some of that may be a little bit of wishful thinking. he's in front of the departure board which doesn't have a lot of good news on it. good morning, allen. >> jim, looking at the board, all i can see is canceled flights. and we're not going to have flights taking out of here for many, many hours. but we do have still some passengers who have been stuck here all night long. all morning we've been telling you about the various nightmare scenarios, about 250 people stuck at the airport overnight, even though there were no flights coming in, going out at all. many of them were able to find cots at least, upstairs in this hallway between the garage and the main terminal. but i've got yet another nightmare story for you. let's have a listen to josh keller and sarah bacowski.
they spent the night in baggage claim, sleeping on the carousel or above it? >> we were actually sleeping on top of the baggage carousel in like a little alcove underneath where the baggage comes down. >> were you really able to sleep there? >> actually, it was probably the most comfortable place for us to sleep. to be honest with you. >> sounds like a positive spin. josh, you told me it was like a disaster movie. >> everybody was together like the eight or nine people there getting in groups trying to figure out where are you coming from, trying to find ways to make it more enjoyable after for some of us in the airport for 14 hours. >> josh, now you are going up on 26 hours. you are supposed to leave yesterday at 9:00 a.m. when are you getting out or are you getting out of here? >> in theory there is a flight that will leave for savannah 2:00 tomorrow. that one is you know, up in the
air. you never know. >> you have given up on the airlines? >> very little hope in u.s. airways at this point. i mean, i've been on five flights canceled, booked and what not. so when you're on the sixth one, yeah. >> sarah, what's the game plan now? by the way, they have just -- they just met at baggage claim. what's your game plan? >> i'm hopefully going to get a flight out tomorrow, if not then you know, i don't know what to do. >> good luck. josh told me actually that he's pretty much fed up with airlines. he's going to take the train this afternoon. that's your game plan? >> absolutely. >> all right. sarah, this is your first flight ever right? >> yeah. >> she flew down here, returned flight, no go. not going to fly for a while? >> probably not. >> back to you guys in the studio. >> you know, poor thing. your first foray into air travel is this. all allan, how is the food
situation? we talked to a stranded passenger who said there were concerns they might run out. >> no problem over here. we've got several fast food outlets open. serving up plenty of stuff, plenty of calories, so i don't know about free food but if you've got cash, you've got food here. not a problem. >> good to hear. allan, thanks so much. and we're going to turn our sights to massachusetts in a few moments. big snow totals coming in up there in that state. and we're going to talk to the governor of massachusetts. he's going to join us live on the phone. what's going on? we ordered a gift online and we really need to do something with it... i'm just not sure what... what is it? oh just return it. returning gifts is easier than ever with priority mail flat rate boxes from the postal service. if it fits, it ships anywhere in the country for a low flat rate. plus i can pick it up for free. perfect because we have to get that outta this house. c'mon, it's not that... gahh, oh yeah that's gotta go...
morning. new england is right in the thick of it now. massachusetts is declared a state of emergency and the governor is urging people to stay put this morning. >> he joins us on the phone, governor deval patrick. thanks for joining us. >> good morning to you and jim and your viewers. >> give us an update how your state is looking and faring in this blizzard. >> we're coping pretty well. the storm is just about as we expected it with blizzard conditions across the whole state, high winds and coastal flooding. thankfully most of -- most people have heeded the warning i put out yesterday to stay off the roads so that we've had very few spin-outs and nothing serious. and we're asking people to continue too stay indoors as much as possible for their own safety but also to give the plows and other emergency responders a chance to do their job. >> unlike the airports in the new york metro area right now your airport logan is open at the moment but that doesn't mean a lot of good news for
passengers and travelers up there. >> that's exactly right. logan is open, one or two runways are open, but they are very few flights coming or going this morning. we don't expect that to change until this afternoon. >> you guys are more equipped to deal with storms and snow. you're used to it. some of these other states are having a little more of a problem, i would say, especially in the south. but what are your biggest concerns now? i know there is also a coastal flood advisory in effect for many of these places as well. >> tides have been very high. around 3 or 4 this morning, we had some coastal flooding. you're right, we are used to severe weather this time of year, and everybody seems to be coping. we have i think a special advantage in some respects that it's holiday time and so a lot of people are home and off from work anyway. i've asked state employees who are non-essential to stay home,
again just to be consistent with the message of staying off the roads. >> and your best advice to folks in massachusetts at this point? >> hunker down, be with your family and have a warm cocoa and if you have to be out to shovel later on remember this is wet and heavy snow, so take care there, too. take it easy. >> right. if you are one of those kids off from school shovel your neighbor's driveway. >> and check on your neighbors, especially elderly. >> absolutely. governor deval patrick, great to talk to you. thanks so much. >> cocoa doesn't sound like a bad idea right now. thanks, governor. we've got a little behind the scenes i guess you could call it look at getting to work here at "american morning." >> we were filing our eye reports. jim had a walk from the hotel in the midst of the blizzard. i had an interesting drive to say the least. we'll show you our reports when we come back. ♪
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>> welcome back. there is a snowy look at hartford, the interstates running through that city look pretty well shut down at this point. you can see some movement there but not much. >> good idea, people listening to what the officials say. stay home. >> some of us had to get to work this morning. >> we didn't listen. >> we didn't. we had to come. there was no getting around that. and i had to walk in which was not a bad thing. you had to make your way from the suburbs. we have a look at some of that, so let's look, first my little